Her Campus Logo Her Campus Logo

The Feels of a 5-Year College Student

This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at UCSB chapter.

It’s not a secret that many college students are now taking more than the standard four years to graduate.  For whatever reason, whether it be money, academic, or personal, some of us are taking a little bit longer to walk across that stage and receive our diplomas.  Although we are not as few and far between, 5-year college students still have unique struggles everyday. 

1. You’re old.

All around you there are juniors and seniors bursting with excitement over turning 21. That excitement has long worn off of you now, but you still have to entertain the endless countdowns of their first legal drink. The good news is you get to witness a number of 21st birthdays, which are always fun. 

2. Everyone you know from your high school class has graduated.

Your Facebook newsfeed is flooded with graduation photos from everyone in your high school class. You knew this was coming, but it still didn’t make you feel good about yourself. You have to listen to everyone proudly announcing their fresh job offers and repeatedly say “I’m happy for you,” even though it gets tiring after a while. 

3. People who graduate early make you want to crawl into a hole.

As if it wasn’t enough to watch all of your fellow high school classmates graduate before you, you now have to watch some students graduate early. You’ve just managed to get it together in five years, how did they accomplish to do it in three?!  

4. Even though you’ve spent more time in college, you still don’t know where you’re headed after graduation. 

You’ve been in college for an extra year (or two) and feel like you should be a little bit ahead of the game, yet you’re still just as lost as your classmates as to where you’re headed after graduation. You’re not quite sure what you want yet, but never fear, you’ll figure it out in time just like everyone else. 

5. You feel confused over the question “What year are you?”

What year am I? I don’t even know. This is my fourth year of college, but I graduate in one more year. I guess that means I’m a junior. Help.  

6. By the time you’re a senior, you feel like you should have been at this point years ago. 

You started getting senioritis last year. You’ve been taking classes for what feels like forever and you’re just getting to your senior year now?! This feels like torture. 

7. But then you realize you’re one of the lucky ones.

Our college years are supposed to be the best of our lives, and you just happen to be lucky enough to get an extra year.  So relish in ordering that pizza at 2am, pint nights on Wednesdays, college discounts, wearing yoga pants everyday, and endless three-day weekends while they last, because they’ll be gone before you know it.  All of these years will be worth it when you grab that diploma. College forever! 

Siobhán is a fourth year English major at UCSB. She is originally from the Bay Area and still misses hearing "hella" on the daily. She loves the ocean, photography/ film, music, and good eats (especially burritos). In her free time, she likes to obsessively watch Netflix, watch the sunset, and experiment with new recipes in the kitchen! You can see what she is up to on her instagram @swetzelll.
Mya McCann is a fourth year literature student in the College of Creative Studies at UCSB. She currently lives in Bangkok, Thailand and is in the business of running BKK. On the weekends you can find Mya either in the jungle or on an island. On the weekdays she studies Thai and Buddhism and teaches English to sex workers in the red light district. You can follow her adventures on IG: MyaJoy